CHARLES E. “BUDDY” ROEMER was born in Shreveport, Louisiana. He graduated president and valedictorian of his high school class. He received a bachelor’s degree in government and economics from Harvard University in 1964 and a master’s degree in business and finance from Harvard Business School in 1967. He then returned to Bossier City, Louisiana, where he founded two banks, ran a computer company, and a political consulting firm. He was elected a delegate to the Lousiana Constitutional Convention in 1972 and won election to Congress in 1980. He was reelected three times without opposition. In Congress, he served on the House Banking Committee and the Small Business Committee, and founded and co-chaired the House Grace Caccus, a bipartisan group recommending cost-saving measures for the federal government. After winning the governorship, he balanced the state budget for three years, increased teacher pay, strengthened the department of environmental quality to enforce environmental laws, and toughened the laws on campaign finance. Late in his term Roemer switched parties and joined the Republicans, but never won the full allegiance of long-term members of the state GOP. Despite a scandal-free administration, he failed to increase the support he received in the 1987 election. Governor Roemer came in third in the 1991 campaign, losing to a controversial team of politicians who incited strong feelings – Edwin Edwards and David Duke.